Transcript of Video News Release Team Jeg's to partner with Don Schumacher Racing November 21, 2004 Interview with Jeg Coughlin Interviewer: How did the partnership with Don Schumacher start? Jeg Jr.: Late this summer we crossed paths a...
Transcript of Video News Release
Team Jeg's to partner with Don Schumacher Racing
November 21, 2004
Interview with Jeg Coughlin
Interviewer: How did the partnership with Don Schumacher start?
Jeg Jr.: Late this summer we crossed paths a few times on the subject of Pro Stock. Don's been looking to get into Pro Stock for a couple of years with one, two perhaps even three cars and through our discussions he was interested in looking at us to come in and drive one of his premier cars. We just continued those conversations throughout the summer and put together what we feel is a fabulous program for Jeg's Mail Order and Don Schumacher Racing.
Interviewer: What response did your family have to your decision?
Jeg Jr.: I've had a tremendous amount of support from the family. Pro stock is a professional class and as the sport evolves it's continuing to change in research and development and change in performance and I think with Troy's transition to Pro Mod running a one-car Pro Stock team is maybe not the correct direction to go. I think all this unfolding at the same time really worked out well for my family and us in particular. Karen and Jeggie are excited to be partnering with a new team and you know that's still going to be the familiar yellow and black that every body is excited to see. I think our associates are going to be behind us 100-percent and it's going be a great effort. It's a new way for us and it's going to be pretty awesome.
Interviewer: How will things change with your driving for another team?
Jeg Jr.: You know I don't see a whole lot of major changes happening for me. I'll be involved in the team in a similar capacity, as I have with our family run team. Instead of being team owner per se, I'll be involved in team sponsorship roles. My goal is to just get out there and do what I like to do best and that's drive the race car and have fun doing it, and I think the alignment with Don, Bob Wooden and the rest of the Team Mopar group the rest is going to be outstanding.
Interviewer: What are your thoughts about Bob Glidden as crew chief?
Jeg Jr.: Having Bob Glidden as crew chief should be second to none. I mean he's a 10-time world champion and has always been one of my heroes. Growing up as a kid my father was racing Top Fuel and I liked Top Fuel but I always enjoyed watching Pro Stock and Bob Glidden was my favorite driver. I mean how could he not be. He was very dominant at the time so he was always enjoyable to watch. Since his return he's had quite an impact on a couple of different teams and more recently in the Mopar camp so to have him in the yellow and black shirt standing behind my car's a going to be tremendous. I think it's going to really elevate our whole program and give me the utmost confidence that we're going to go A to B every time and as efficiently as we can.
Interviewer: How Important is it to drive a Jeg's sponsored car?
Jeg Jr.: Early in our discussions with Don it was leaning more toward driving a black and white or a red and white car to do with Mopar or the Dodge dealerships. We didn't say that would be a deal breaker but I'm a yellow and black guy and I think that's very important. We felt that Jeg's needed to be there, which worked out great for Don because it brought on a new alliance and a new sponsor in Jeg's so I think it is a win-win situation. We're really looking forward to the partnerships with the U.S. Army, with Matco Tools, and with Oakley.
Interviewer: What do you know about your new teammates?
Jeg Jr.: Well no explanation needed for Bob Glidden, again 10-time world champion. Don Schumacher being the team owner, Bob being more or less the GM over the Pro Stock operations both with the in-house engine development and on-track racing and a couple of guys that worked with us here, Nick Ferry and Greg Cody, went to join their efforts in the research and development of the engine program so that's very exciting. I know Rusty Glidden's going to be a part of the team and I know him well from kicking rocks with him when I was a kid and into seeing him throughout the years as we've raced and I think there will be a couple other key members come onto the team. I may already know them but to look forward to meeting them and forming our alliances together. There's going to be a second car that a driver will be named real soon and I think that's going to be real exciting to work with and I've heard the names of the possible driver's and there's not one of them I wouldn't be excited to work with.
Interviewer: What do you think about the Hemi engine?
Jeg Jr.: I think the Hemi engine has had quiet resurgence the last couple of years. It's made its way back into under the hoods of the Dodge cars on the showroom floors and the Hemi racing program in Pro Stock has just been outstanding. The horsepower levels they're making and are capable of making are going to propel Dodge and Mopar and JEG'S to a world championship.
Interviewer: What are your expectations for 2005?
Jeg Jr.: Our plans for 2005 start actually here in 2004. We'll be testing real soon in December, looking to shake down a new Jerry Haas-built Dodge Stratus. I'm sure we'll break for the holidays and then hit the testing real hard in January. That just gets us prepared for the first race in Pomona in February and we're obviously going for an all-out assault in 2005. It's been awhile since dodge has won on the NHRA tour and I feel with the alignment of all these personalities and professionals that we can return to the winner's circle very soon and obviously challenge for the POWERade championship.
Interviewer: When do you start driving your new car?
Jeg Jr.: Our first test date at this point is either the first or third week of December. We're looking at seeing how the schedule aligns. Goodyear has some tire-testing going on in Gainesville, Fla., so we're looking to align ourselves with that. Don will be testing some of the new fuel cars with the new fuel tires with Goodyear and we look to couple our efforts with that.
Interviewer: How will the JEG'S brand be strengthened by the change?
Jeg Jr.: I think the JEG'S brand will be very visible throughout Team Schumacher, including the reigning POWERade Top Fuel champion Tony Schumacher and the U.S. Army dragster. They'll be a handsome yellow and black Jeg's decal placed on that car as well as Whit Bazemore's Matco Tools Dodge Funny Car. Gary Scelzi in the Oakley Dodge Funny Car. and of course the two Pro Stock Bikes of Angelle Savoie and Antron Brown. So from that standpoint Jeg's is very excited to be a part of not just the Jeg's Pro Stock car but also be aligned with these other professional cars under the team umbrella. We're already a sponsor in the NHRA and a lot of the cars run our logo because of our participation but I think this just strengthens the direction that Jeg's is going and that's to continue to build the brand identity so that we can attract customers.
Interviewer: Is this the best way to win a national championship?
Jeg Jr.: We certainly have the means and the resources to challenge for a world championship right out of this shop here in Delaware, Ohio, and I think it was more just a business decision the family had come to. Troy's transition to Pro Mod and me staying in Pro Stock, I think lent ourselves to do one of two things consider bringing more resources into our team to continue to run or to continue to align yourself with a partnership like we have with Don Schumacher.
Interviewer: How will driving a new car effect your time commitment?
Jeg Jr.: Well time is tough to define really whether you're working in the business or you're working in the Coughlin Brother's Racing you're always thinking about it so I don't think a whole lot is really going to change. The bottom line is you have to have a team that's gelled and communicates and very confident that it's going to be the No. 1 car and I think that's our focus. I don't really see the time being effected one way or the other real strongly but I will say I do look forward to a little less on my plate in the respect to maybe spend more time with my family or different project's that we're working on at Jeg's so it's going to be a great venture.